From the December 1987 issue of Car and Driver.
It was hard to believe it was actually happening. At ten o’clock on a summer’s eve, in a garage in the middle of nowhere, the cars began to arrive. One by one, the fastest street machines in America rolled out of the pitch-black Ohio night and through the double-high garage doors, as if drawn by the bright lights inside. The Eagles were gathering.
Their arrival signaled the beginning of a mission that was crystal clear in its simplicity: to crown the fastest street car in America. Why did we want to do that? Because, to paraphrase George Leigh Mallory, they were there. For years, stories have rippled through the automotive underground about superfast street cars, said to be capable of more than 200 mph. The banzai runners—wild men who terrorize the highways at warp velocity during the wee hours—have been the subject of at least two magazine articles. Three years ago, our own Csaba Csere aided and abetted Gale Banks in developing a Pontiac Trans Am that cracked the double-century mark. If there was one such car on the loose, there had to be dozens.
We baited the hook with a promise of a brush with fame and a chance to run flat out at one of the safest, best-equipped high-speed facilities in the world. “Come join us at the Transportation Research Center of Ohio,” our official invitation trumpeted. “We’ll run your car against the clocks on TRC’s 7.5-mile oval. Oh, and don’t bother showing up unless your car is…